There are three types of motorcycles: chain drive, shaft drive, and belt drive, each of which has its advantages and disadvantages, with chain drive being the most common. Most motorcycles, from the 50cc Super Cub to the world's top MotoGP race bikes, use chains. As one of the main transmission components of a motorcycle, the chain is particularly important to maintain because it is exposed to the sun and rain for long periods. Learning how to clean and lubricate a motorcycle chain is one of the first tasks that many novice motorcyclists perform daily. It is a very simple process that only takes about 15 minutes to complete, but will go a long way toward extending the life of your motorcycle chain and sprockets and the performance of your motorcycle. This article will provide a guide to the process, with step-by-step instructions on how to clean and maintain a motorcycle chain.
How To Do Motorcycle Chain Maintenance?
The maintenance of motorcycle chains mainly focuses on four aspects: adjustment of chain tension, cleaning, lubrication, and wear.
1. Adjustment of tension. Generally, when the car is shipped from the factory, the standard tightness is set by default, so there is no need for special adjustment. Generally speaking, the tension of the motorcycle chain should be kept between 15cm and 20cm.
2. Chain cleaning. The chain can be cleaned regularly with a special brush to remove the dirt (mud, rust, lubricant mud) from the surface of the chain, or you can use a toothbrush if you don't have tools.
3. Chain lubrication. Generally, the chain should be lubricated once every six months, and when the chain is dry, rusty, or rattling, the chain should be lubricated in advance.
4. Wear and tear maintenance. If the chain is deformed, broken, or fractured, it needs to be replaced with a new motorcycle chain.
How Often Does Motorcycle Chain Maintenance?
According to the factory, it is recommended to oil the chain every 500 km or after a rainy day. It will keep the chain healthy for a long time, and after every two oilings, another cleaning can be done. The maintenance of motorcycle chains for urban riding can be done every 1000km, and if the current vehicle is equipped with a high-quality oil-sealed chain, it can be extended to about 2000km. Of course, this process also takes into account personal driving habits and actual road conditions, because sometimes rapid acceleration, frequent off-gear riding, and muddy roads can shorten the chain maintenance cycle, so you should always pay attention to the chain's tightness and lubrication status during later rides.
Try to choose a good road to drive. For example, avoid the road with mud. Check the chain regularly to see if it is clogged with mud and clean it regularly. Regularly maintain the chain. When maintaining the chain, apply chain oil first and then brush the oil again. In the process of brushing oil, make sure to use a fine and soft brush slowly.
How To Clean A Motorcycle Chain?
The best way to clean a dirty chain is to use a chain cleaner. If you want to keep it simple, you can take your household detergent and mix it with hot water and clean it with a chain brush or toothbrush. However, if it is clay-like dirt caused by oil, then using a penetrating lubricant that will not damage the rubber seal is also effective.
▲ Use chain cleaner and penetrating lubricant to make the dirt come out first, then use a chain cleaning brush or toothbrush to brush off the dirt and then wipe it off with a wipe cloth. If you apply chain oil directly to the dirt, it will not be able to penetrate and the effect is relatively limited.
Dust, gravel, and water splashes from the rainy day will add dirt directly to the chain and disc surface. Repeatedly applying chain oil will also cause the oil itself to accumulate on the chain. Although the dirty oil will attract dust and debris, cleaning is a very important task when maintaining the chain. In the case of an oil-sealed chain, the most important thing is to remove the high viscosity dirt. And when cleaning, choose a cleaner that will not hurt the rubber seal, and never use kerosene that will swell the rubber.
How To Lubricate Your Motorcycle Chain?
After the cleaning work, the next step is to lubricate the motorcycle chain, but if the chain is lubricated casually, it will become another cause of dirt, so the most important thing is to lubricate only the areas that need lubrication.
In terms of the chain structure, the only places that need to be lubricated are the places where the metal parts are in direct contact with each other, except for the two places between the tooth plate and the roller, the roller and the bushing, and the left and right rubber seals that are clamped by the two gourd-shaped chain plates. Proper oiling of the rubber seal can reduce the resistance between the chain plate and the rubber and help to reduce the wear of the rubber seal.